By Sarah Madden for TIEC
Mill Spring, NC – November 7, 2021 – Harold Chopping (Southern Pines, NC) claimed first and third place honors in Sunday’s $25,000 Cleghorn Golf & Sports Club Grand Prix at Tryon International Equestrian Center & Resort (TIEC). Chopping earned the win aboard Gerderieka II VI, the 2011 Dutch Warmblood mare (Campbell VDL x Ulderika) owned by Rein Family LLC, after stopping the jump-off timers in 34.96 seconds, and piloted Quadrant 3, the 2012 Holsteiner gelding (Quadros x O-Carlotta) also owned by Rein Family LLC, to third place on a time of 35.753 seconds. Glenn Hartigan (Hume, VA) edged into second place on a time of 35.727 seconds with Picadero 16, the 2012 Rhineland gelding (Prinz Wilhelm x Sabina) owned by Nicola Dickinson.
Chopping came back to TIEC for a last competition outing in 2021, pleased with how it turned out for him and for his owners alike. “Our owners, Mark and Tera Rein, are a major sponsor and have been for years. They’re friends of mine from a long time ago, so it’s really fun to win with their horses. We were here earlier in the fall,” Chopping recapped, “and we came back to get the horses out to jump again because there’s not much left in the year for us. I’m thrilled!”
“The course was very fair,” Chopping assessed of the Dean Rheinheimer (Sheridan, IN) course design. “For the number of entries, it was appropriate. The jump-off track was good, too. They really let you have a run at it if you wanted to. In the first round, I think the angle to the double in the corner made it difficult.
“I wanted to be smooth and clean with the mare who ended up winning,” Chopping shared of his winning strategy. “She’s naturally fast, so you don’t really have to make that happen. You just have to keep her balanced and stay in the gallop. When you look at the clock, you’re always going quicker than you thought with her. I was very pleased with that.”
Chopping revealed that he felt his gelding had at least caught second place, but just barely missed out on the one-two podium punch. “With Quadrant 3, if you really want to chase and go after it, he’s got a big step [to do it]. I thought I was quick enough to be second with him, but I guess I was just a fraction off of that. He went around very well, though!”
After competing throughout the season at TIEC in both the Hunters and Jumpers, Chopping is pleased with his successes and will be one to watch in 2022 when he returns. “We get to come here a few times a year,” he concluded. “It’s only a couple hundred miles from my farm, so it’s always a go-to spot for us. [We appreciate] the FEI events, jumping under the lights, and things like that where you can advance the horses. It’s got a little bit of everything!”
Allen Nabors, Jr. (Ocala, FL) and Casanova DVE collected the win in Friday’s $5,000 Horseware Ireland Welcome Stake, stopping the jump-off timers in 40.425 seconds for the win. Glenn Hartigan (Hume, VA) and Picadero 16, the 2012 Rhineland gelding (Prinz Wilhelm x Sabina) owned by Nicola Dickinson, claimed reserve on a time of 40.983 seconds through the Dean Rheinheimer (Sheridan, IN) course. Anna Dryden (Towson, MD) and Miss Milly Manou, the 2012 Oldenburg mare (Mylord Carthago x Alhambra) owned by Double Meadows Farm LLC, claimed the final podium spot with their 44.551-second tour of the jump-off track.
Nabors and the 2012 Belgian Warmblood gelding (Clinton x Diona V/D/ Wezelse Heihoeve VM) owned by Dutch Valley Sporthorses are getting back into the ring at the national level after his mount just contested his first CSI 2* competition, he reported.“We came up here to Tryon to get this guy back in the ring. He just jumped a two-star, and it was pretty big for him. He’s just turning ten. So, we came back up here. The footing is absolutely perfect, and the course was nice.”